Welcome to the memorial page for

Judith Lynn (Fertalj) Callahan

June 1, 1957 ~ May 27, 2017 (age 59)

The Piano Brothers

Judy Callahan found peace on May 27, 2017 at University Hospitals while surrounded by her closest family and friends. Judy was born on June 1, 1957 in Lorain, Ohio and resided there her entire life - probably because she could not leave behind her beloved front porch sunsets and the close bonds of her friends and relatives.  

A member of the Lorain High School class of 1975, she later attended the University of Dayton and Kent State University, graduating with a bachelors degree in nursing in 1981. She spent over three decades working in the health field, first as a visiting nurse for the Lorain City Health Department, and then as a nurse and case manager in behavioral health at both St. Joseph Hospital and Mercy Hospital. She was the rare type of person who actually loved her job. She found great fulfillment in working with and advocating for her patients, and looked forward to spending every day with her coworkers. 

Judy was rarely ever immobile. This go-getter could be found walking her dogs Bailey and Barkley in the rose garden at Lakeview Park, trying new recipes from the countries she visited, traveling the world over with her tight knit family, cross country and downhill skiing in frigid temperatures, biking different paths that conveniently lead to wineries, and having the time of her life dancing and singing at the wild annual Callahan parties. She was definitely not someone to rest on her laurels, but all of these strenuous activities had to be completed by 8pm every night, so that she could have her bubble bath and wind down before bed. Her active lifestyle experiences were enhanced by completing them with her family and friends, who never left her side.  

Judy was an exceptional mother who always put her childrens' needs first, and constantly worried about their happiness and futures. She set an unprecedented example of what it meant to not just be a mother to her children, but also a best friend, confidant, and inspiration to them all.  

She will forever be remembered for her inability to leave the house without putting her makeup on and doing her hair (even if it would be ruined five minutes later by downhill skiing,) her knack for telling stories that would meander on for hours, her "fun facts" for random locations while traveling across Europe, her love of fine wine and laughter, her affection and adoration for her pets, but most of all for her unconditional love and friendship that so many people were blessed to know.  

Judy is survived by many who will carry on her legacy and love for life, including her other half and sunset watching partner of 33 years, Terry, their three children Patrick (Lynne), Theresa (Eric), and Corey, her sisters Mary Fertalj, Margaret Wood, Kathy Fertalj-Torres and her father John Fertalj, many nieces and nephews, and a humongous family of in-laws that proved time and again that blood has nothing to do with bond.  She was preceded in death by her mother, Ethel Fertalj in 2007.  

Friends may call on Wednesday, May 31st from 4-7 PM at Reidy-Scanlan-Giovannazzo Funeral Home and Cremation Service, 2150 Broadway, Lorain, OH. Closing prayers will begin at 9am at the funeral home on Thursday, June 1 2017, with Mass to follow at 10am at St. Mary Church, Lorain with burial following at Calvary Cemetery. 

The family asks that you crack open your favorite bottle of wine, and sit and enjoy the sunsets we will be blessed with this summer in honor of the wonderful life Judy lived.

Online condolences and gifts of sympathy may be shared with the family by visiting 




 Service Information

May 31, 2017

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Reidy Scanlan Giovannazzo Funeral Home
2150 Broadway Avenue
Lorain, OH 44052

Closing prayers
June 1, 2017

9:00 AM
Reidy Scanlan Giovannazzo Funeral Home
2150 Broadway Avenue
Lorain, OH 44052

Mass of Christian Burial
June 1, 2017

10:00 AM
St. Mary Church
309 W. 7th St.
Lorain, OH 44052

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